Monday, 4 November 2019

Ecs210 week 9

These are the prompts for this weeks blog post

     At the beginning of the reading, Leroy Little Bear (2000) states that colonialism "tries to maintain a singular social order by means of force and law, suppressing the diversity of human worldviews. ... Typically, this proposition creates oppression and discrimination" (p. 77). Think back on your experiences of the teaching and learning of mathematics -- were there aspects of it that were oppressive and/or discriminating for you or other students?
      After reading Poirier’s article: Teaching mathematics and the Inuit Community, identify at least three ways in which Inuit mathematics challenge Eurocentric ideas about the purposes of mathematics and the way we learn it.

     To start unpacking all this information, no. I never felt discriminated against in mathematics at any level. Even when I went from all French maths to all English maths, I understood that I needed to work harder to understand what was being taught to me. The only thing that really bothered me was I would get points taken off my homework and tests if I put the dollar sign after the number in a monetary sense (which is the French way to do it) however, I went to school in an English speaking area of Canada and needed to change my tune to get better grades. Overall, yes it was a challenge to me and I never got any accommodations to help me out. I worked hard and reaped the benefits. 
      When it comes to Inuit Mathematics teachings, they challenge our ideas of measurement (particularly when it comes to time) with what changes in nature around them. Their calendar depends entirely on nature, not on a numerical system set in place by others. They also just don't have the language for lots of words we use constantly in mathematics, as our language is made up of many different languages. It's pretty interesting to look over, and I can somewhat relate to the math language barrier, but clearly not on the same level. They also have a different sense of space, as they can read snowbanks and reorient themselves by smelling the air. It's all very interesting stuff, however I still cannot understand how our mathematics system is discriminatory against Inuit peoples.

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